Friday, 28 February 2014

Re:Make The Silk Museum

The Silk Mill in Derby was refused funding to refurbish and enhance the space. The curators and staff could have cut their losses but instead they launched Re:Make. The local community, curators and design companies signed up to a project to rebuild the museum. Since late 2013 co-design workshops have been taking place where elements of the build are created while participants learn a variety of skills. I am so excited to see how this project develops and looking forward to visiting the space when it's complete. It would be amazing for the space to become a cultural hub which was built by it's community.

I am so interested in the idea of residents taking ownership over their towns and being responsible for their development. You can read more about the project here and even get involved.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Edible Masterpieces

I couldn't resist sharing this with you all since it combines my two favourite loves, art and food! The Art Fund is encouraging artlovers to help fund raise through baking famous masterpieces. So if you fancy some Wedgewood Inspired shortbread or a Sarah Lucas inspired gingerbread cake then download recipes here and get baking!

Damien Hirst




Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Paperfolk Loves... Beccy Ridsdel

I came across Beccy Ridsdel on Folksy and after looking at her gorgeous brooches and plates I decided to view her fine art pieces online. I loved so much of her work but it was her surgical experiments with ceramics that really caught my eye. Artists who work with everyday objects and offer a different view of them are so inspiring. The works are so delicate and each project is visually different so I think there is a lot more to come from Beccy Ridsdel!

Monday, 24 February 2014

Monday Musings: Mood Indigo

Last night I went along to the Glasgow Film Festival to see Mood Indigo. Michel Gondry's recent film was released in France in 2013 but premiered at the Glasgow Film Theatre last night.

I absolutely love Gondry's music videos and of course Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind so I was very excited about Mood Indigo. The film is an adaptation of a novel by Boris Vian.

The plot is very much a boy meets girl tale but Chloe (Audrey Tatou) ends up very ill because of a waterlily growing in her lung. Husband, Colin (Romain Duris) spends his last pennies trying to cure her illness. The story is very straightforward but the visual aspects of the film are where Gondry's attention has clearly been focused. The image above shows the couple taking a trip around Paris in a mechanical cloud and is very typical of the eccentric aesthetics of the film.

I would love to say that the film was beautifully emotive from beginning to end but unfortunately it wasn't the case. The quirkiness of the props was overbearing and often hard to follow. The charm often associated with Gondry's handmade props and stop frame animation was too much and at times came across as someone spending a great deal of money trying to create a 'handmade' look. The story became lost and by the end I didn't feel enough connection to the characters to be upset at their plight.

I think I was maybe expecting too much from the film and potentially judged it quite harshly. I have a knack of doing that when I love an artist or film-maker. The film is definitely worth seeing and maybe on a second viewing I might change my mind!

What do you guys think? Has anyone seen it?

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Paperfolk Loves...Kimika Hara

Kimika Hara is a Japanese artist who has a lovely way of handling thread. I'm not normally a fan of embroidered animals etc as I usually find it a bit twee for my taste but Kimika's use of neon threads, pattern and embellishments has really won me over.

I spend a lot of time on my embroidery works, using various patterns that takes weeks to create so I really appreciate other embroidery artists who do the same.

You can check out more of Kimika's works here.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Crafty Exploits... Colour Themed Photography

I've been experimenting with some colour themed photography to try and combine images of my jewellery with something a bit different.

Here are my first two efforts. There'll be more to come when I have more time (sigh).... Ha I just don't ever have enough time to do everything I want to do!

Friday, 14 February 2014


I can't remember if I shared this with you all before but I originally studied Fine Art Photography at Glasgow School of Art. I've always liked to dip in and out of different art mediums but I did really enjoy my time focussed on photography. It's strange to think back now that digital wasn't really on anyone's mind- we had three computers with photoshop on them for the whole department. I was more interested in using medium format cameras because I like the hands on process. I processed my own film and printed in a colour darkroom, I feel really lucky to have been able to do that.

I have always been interested in how people collect items and how we use them in our homes. I completed a project that looked at how we spend lifetimes decorating homes that don't belong to us. In Glasgow we have many areas that are populated with housing provided by local councils and when people pass away there is a very short time period (a couple of weeks) for families to clear the home, leaving no trace. The following images were taken in these homes... if you would like to see more check out my photography section here.

Monday, 10 February 2014

Paperfolk Loves... Nadja Sheremet

Nadja Sheremet is a very gifted embroiderer who is originally from Ukraine but now lives in Russia with her family. She learned skills from her grandmother and uses them to make modern products that still have a folk-like feel. I love her use of black and red threads in her work and how she manages to give an illustrated feel to 3-D pieces. Please check out her website, it has lots more examples of her work.


Sunday, 9 February 2014

Monday Musings: We're in a magazine!

We've had a mention in a new embroidery magazine! Hoop-La features projects and inspiration for contemporary embroiderers. I've been a bit disappointed by the range of magazines available for those of us who like our embroidery to be a little less twee. I've got high hopes for this one. If you fancy having a little look before you buy, you can do here. You can also follow on twitter as well (@Hooplamag )
Let me know what you think or if you make any of the projects...

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Crafty Exploits: New Work 3

Some more bits and pieces I've been working away on over the past couple of weeks...

All available to purchase in my Etsy shop.

Inspiring Reads: My Favourite Embroidery

I was so excited when my new book came through the post! My favourite embroidery by Reiko Mori is a gorgeous book full of everyday motifs from socks to baskets to lace. The book is typically Japanese in style with delicate images of embroideries in lovely colour ways.

I must stress that the book is written in Japanese aside from the titles of the embroideries so you won't find step by step instructions for each mini project. If you're quite an experienced stitcher you might find that the full sized images are enough to follow.

I really like the way the book shows motifs individually in various patterns/colourways and then illustrates how they can be used as a tote or drawstring bag etc.

I'm n the look out for some more titles by this artist